Every week day, Augsburg students lead volunteers and service-learners into the neighborhood to make healthy food available through the following programs:
1) Campus Cupboard – A free food shelf on campus run by and for students. Call Allyson at 612-330-1624 to access the Cupboard outside of open hours.
2) Farmers Market Gleaning (Vegetable Rescue) – Every Saturday during the summer and fall, you’ll find us at the Mill City Farmer’s Market, collecting donated produce and distributing it to our neighbors in Cedar-Riverside.
3) Free Community Meals – This is the core of our program, and occupies the majority of our time. Students reheat, repackage, cater, and deliver surplus dining hall food (graciously donated by A’Viands Campus Dining) at our non-profit partners in South Minneapolis. Almost all of the meal shifts include a free meal for the volunteers, and most importantly, give students a chance to dine and converse with our neighbors.
Monday – Thursday: Brian Coyle Community Center. Run by Pillsbury United Communities, the Brian Coyle Center serves the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood of Minneapolis with basic needs, self-sufficiency, and youth services. We serve supper to the youth, primarily East African, and staff of the Kids College program every Monday – Thursday through the At-Risk Afterschool Food Program and Summer Food Service Program. After serving the meal, Campus Kitchen students get to sit down and eat with the youth before cleaning up and returning to campus.
Tuesday: Peace House. A day shelter that provides hospitality during the day in a peaceful and restful place, Peace House gives food, voice, and respect to homeless and low-income people in the neighborhood near Franklin and Portland Avenues in Minneapolis. Every lunch is preceded by ‘Meditation’ – a group discussion on a rotating topic which we get to participate in. We serve lunch at Peace House every Tuesday during the school year.
2nd Wednesday of the Month: Trinity Lutheran. The Wednesday Night Supper at Trinity Lutheran Congregation brings congregation members, neighbors, and students together for a communal meal each week with the help of local organizations and volunteers. We serve supper here every second Wednesday of the month.
Thursday: Ebenezer Tower, Seward Tower East, Seward Tower West. Ebenezer Tower provides subsidized independent-living to seniors, and Seward Tower West and Seward Tower East are low-income apartments managed by Common Bond Communities. We deliver packaged lunches to elderly residents at these buildings every Thursday. After packaging meals in the Augsburg kitchen, we knock on the doors of our 60 clients to say hello and deliver the meals. There’s a lot of walking during these shifts, as we carry bags of meals up elevators and down stairs during the shift.
Friday: Ebenezer Tower. On Fridays, we return to Ebenezer Tower to serve the building’s only communal meal of the week. Around 50 residents gather to eat with us, enjoy conversation, and take in the view of the city from the 23rd floor. After serving dinner and making sure everyone receives a meal, we spread out and sit down to chat with the seniors before cleaning up and heading back to campus. Occasionally, students or seniors will sit down at the piano or bring along their guitars to practice, share their favorite songs, or start a sing-along.